“For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: Isaiah 44:3
How much do I treasure what happened at Pentecost? I’ve said goodbye to loved ones who are now in heaven. My mother died when I was 30. I never knew my grandfathers. My grandmothers passed away when I was 25. My Dad went home to heaven in 2003. And our son, Ryan, in 2019 on Father’s Day. When you have had those you love near you, and then they’re gone, the absence is both excruciating and disorienting before it is comforting.
So to be a disciple of Jesus, to have had Him with you and then see Him leave, would leave a void the likes no one has experienced unless you lived in 33 A.D. They didn’t say goodbye to a son, or parent, or wife or husband; they said goodbye to the fullness of God sitting next to them. The One who was Wisdom walked with them. The One who was Love consistently discerned their spiritual and physical needs and spoke into their thoughts with perfectly crafted language. When He announced that He was leaving, I can’t imagine the panic and perhaps even the sense of betrayal they felt. The caveat in his announcement, however, was the promise that He would not leave them as orphans and would come back to them again in better form.
It was only months later that Pentecost happened. They got back the One they lost and it was better. He was right! Instead of walking with Him on the roads of Judea, they were filled with His presence. The words from the scrolls of Isaiah washed over them as their internal wilderness was transformed by the incoming floods of Living Water.
This is the greatest of all gifts today. What I think I need most may not be my greatest need. Nothing is more important today, even stacked up against the unraveling of our way of life, than being filled with the Holy Spirit’s power so that my faith may be full.
Oh Spirit of God, be poured out upon those who don’t have you or even want you. Bring those dead in sin to living faith. Be poured out to comfort those whose hearts are broken, to encourage those who are disillusioned with you. Be poured out upon the dry bones of our lives, the places where the smell of death is still in the air. Be poured out upon the Word which we know, the Word which has been preached to us, prayed over us, and yet has not taken root to change us. Touch our barren landscapes with the promise of green. We are the dry ground and You are the river. Amen